Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has revealed, one of his greatest regrets was the fact he was not able to prevent the Rwandan massacre of 1994, in which nearly a million people were killed.
About 800 thousand people were killed in the ethnic war in 1994 in the East African country.
Mr. Annan, who was then the Head of the UN Department for Peace keeping, however explained why the body had some difficulties in stopping the killings.
The former UN Secretary General who was speaking on the BBC’s OUTLOOK programme said “we knew we will not get the mandate to do a more assertive action in Rwanda which would also imply additional resources- men and women” however there was just about 600 troops available for his office to work with.
Mr. Annan described the situation as “very frustrating and we withdrew some of those who were on the ground because the governments didn’t want to take the risk”.
“And it is frustrating because of as Head of Peace keeping or even as Secretary General, you are as strong as the member states. If they don’t give me the troops and the resources, there is nothing much you can do,” Mr. Annan told host of the programme Matthew Bannister.
Kofi Annan who felt sorry over the situation recalled making a statement that “if genocide cannot make us move, then what could move us?” in expressing disgust at the low level of commitment member states showed to the Rwandan situation which eventually resulted in the killings.